Despite facing umpteen adversaries, Dana White’s ambitious ‘UFC Fight Island’ has finally come into fruition with the recent success of UFC 251. However, UFC’s top-rated lightweight prospect and current champion Khabib Nurmagomedov is still not in a hurry to make a comeback as Dana White doesn’t want to put any pressure over the Dagestani to make a return soon. Khabib, 31, has recently lost his father Abulmanap Nurmagomedov due to COVID-19 complications and the entire MMA community is currently mourning the loss.
Khabib Nurmagomedov, who has been undefeated in UFC has always seen his father by the side. Abdul Manap Nurmagomedov reportedly started to train Khabib when he was a child and has cornered him till his last UFC appearance against Dustin Poirier at UFC 242. However, since then Khabib has been inactive in the UFC and it seems that ‘The Eagle’ will take some more time to heal up from the personal loss, following to his UFC return.
UFC chief Dana White expressed his condolences to Khabib Nurmagomedov and his family after the tragic loss of Abdulmanap Nurmagomedov and has recently stated that UFC is not going t pressurize their lightweight champion for making a return soon.
While interacting with MMA Junkie, Dana White said, “We’re not messing with Khabib. We’re leaving Khabib alone. Khabib needs time,” White said. “Khabib is going to need time to get his head straight and figure out what’s next for him, you know? So we’re just gonna leave him alone for a little while. We’ll figure it out.”
After a successful title defense at UFC 242, Khabib Nurmagomedov was staged to defend his title against Tony Ferguson at the headliner of UFC 249. However, the global pandemic outbreak massacred the entire plan for the lightweight division, forcing Khabib Nurmagomedov to remain inside the national borders of his home country Russia.
Meanwhile, UFC replaced Khabib with Justin Gaethje against Tony Ferguson at the main event of UFC 249 and the lightweight title fight was rescheduled as the Interim lightweight title fight. ‘he Highlight’ utilized the opportunity to the fillest and vanquished Tony Ferguson to earn his lightweight title shot officially.
Now, Khabib Nurmagomedov would be defending his undefeated MMA record and UFC lightweight title against Justin Gaethje on return. However, the date and venue of the matchup ‘are yet to be finalized by the officials and Dana White.
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